Throughout its history The Whisky Exchange and its founders have supported a number of charity and community projects close to their hearts. We are incredibly proud of the contributions we have made and are determined to do even more in future — to which end, The Whisky Exchange is currently moving towards a formalised system of charity partnerships. In the meantime, a few of our previous projects are highlighted below.
His Majesty King Charles III is well known as a fan of whisky, and when he worked with Royal Lochnagar to sell his own cask of 30-year-old single malt to raise funds for his personal charity at the time, The Prince’s Foundation, The Whisky Exchange was honoured to be chosen to conduct the sale of the bottles. The sale of 184 bottles raised more than £225,000 for the Prince’s Foundation.
We’re lucky enough to work in an industry we love every day, and we support organisations which help people find a footing within it, as well as those which provide assistance to drinks professionals facing hard times. We are particularly proud to support The Drinks Trust, which provides a wealth of aid and wellbeing initiatives to the community, and Equal Measures, which provides mentoring and accredited training to those from less represented communities.
During the Covid pandemic, we saw many of our friends in the hospitality industry in dire need, and decided to help them directly. Over the two years we worked on a variety of initiatives, from creating at home cocktail kits in conjunction with top London bars – Bring the Bar Home – to packing and delivering wellbeing packs of essential supplies to those working in the industry suddenly finding themselves in need of a helping hand.
Lagavulin, on the isle of Islay in Scotland, is one of the world favourite smoky whiskies. As part of the distillery’s bicentennial celebrations, they created a special charity whisky to support groups on Islay itself. They chose us as their retail partner and we ran a successful ballot and sale of 522 bottles, raising more than £500,000 for seven local charities.
Working with Plastic Oceans, a not-for-profit which funds charities around the global battling plastic pollution, and Whisky.Auction, we hosted an auction of exceptionally rare whiskies and fine spirits. The auction lots were displayed at the 2018 Whisky Show and the subsequent auction raised more than £300,000.
In 2015, Nepal was hit with its biggest earthquake in 80 years, killing nearly 9,000 people and injuring 22,000 more. The Whisky Exchange team has strong connections with Nepal and immediately started work on charity projects to help the rebuilding efforts. This was focused on a limited-edition bottling of Karuizawa, which was presented to the attendees of a very special masterclass led by whisky expert Dave Broom.
Along with a charity auction for the final two bottles in the UK and Hong Kong, this raised more than £250,000 for Maiti Nepal, Help Nepal Network, Nepal Trust Community Action Nepal and a variety of projects in Gorkha, the province at the epicentre of the earthquake.